Blood Into Wine Into Badge (Reviewing Arizona Wines)

Vinted on November 12, 2010 binned in crowd pleaser wines, wine review

I know this end-of-week segment has tentatively been reserved for wines of the week, but so far I’ve featured wines not actually reviewed during the week in question, and in this case I’m giving a badge to just one wine and not multiple wines… so let’s just agree that some re-branding might be in order, ok?

The thing is, I keep encountering cool and interesting wine shiz that I want to share, like last week’s T.A.S.T.E. mini-bottle craze and the wines of Paul Dolan, so let’s also just agree that we’ve started an anti-segment and get on with it, ok?  Ok!  Excellent!

Now that we have that out of the way, let’s talk Arizona.  As in, Yes, Arizona is making wine, just like the rest of the states in the U.S.

Of course, when you tell someone that you just tasted some (samples of) AZ wine, and just watched a (review copy) of the film Blood Into Wine (which chronicles in vastly-entertaining-but-sometimes-too-advertisement-like-fashion the work of rocker Maynard James Keenan and winemaker Eric Glomski to put AZ on the fine wine map), invariably this is the response that you will get:

“Maynard Keenan? Isn’t that the dude from Tool and Puscifer? Arizona makes wine?  WTF?”

At least, that’s been my experience.

Based on the similar befuddled reactions of my friends, I can only imagine what the AZ wine industry has to endure every day when asked about their efforts to bring fine wine recognition to the state. My guess is that Napa makes fun of them, all isn’t-that-cute-little-brother style, like the way that we treat Canada most of the time. As my friend Alder Yarrow said during his cameo in Blood Into Wine (paraphrased): I taste a sh*tload of wines every year “and 99.9% of them are not from Arizona.”

Based on what Glomski and Keenan are doing, however, I am wondering if that situation may change in the not-too-distant future…

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1WineDude TV Episode 20: A Simple Way To Vastly Improve Your Wine Writing (Going Pro)

Vinted on November 10, 2010 binned in 1WineDude TV, going pro, wine blogging

In this episode of 1WineDude TV, we’ve got our first video in my on-going Going Pro saga, in which I talk about something very simple that every budding wine writer should do to vastly increase their writing skills.

A couple of points for you before watching:

  1. The reason I’m flushed and sweating (gross!) in this vid is that just before filming it I ran for three miles, showered, and then got dressed and jumped in front of the camera – basically, I didn’t give myself any real cool-down time.  I know, rookie error… just try to ignore it…
  2. This advice is going to seem obvious and maybe even stupid to a lot of people.  If you’re among their ranks, rather than tell me I’m a shallow idiot in the comments, I humbly suggest that you forward this advice to a blogging friend who needs to see it – and I personally guarantee that you know more than one who needs to see this (if I’m wrong, then you can call me an idiot in the comments!).

Mentioned in this vid:





Help Some Nice Canadians Study Wine Writing (And Maybe Win $700 of Stuff!)

Vinted on November 9, 2010 binned in giveaways, wine blogging, wine polls

I was recently contacted by a nice fellow by the name of David Cray.  He seems nice, anyway, from our brief email discussions (it’s probably because he’s Canadian – they all seem to be nice, don’t they?).

Anyway, David is an Associate Professor at the Sprott School of Business at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, and along with colleagues Louise Heslop and Alex Ramirez, is studying (in his words): “how [wine] blogs operate and what differentiates between a successful blog and one that is less so.”

Well, I’m interested in that big-time, so I took the survey they’re using to help capture some of that data, and nice-guy-Canadian David asked me to pass along the survey to you out there in blog-o-land, in the hopes that you’ll take 15 minutes out of your busy day to help their cause.  To encourage participation, David also told me that there’s a prize involved:

“The name of anyone who completes the survey will go into a draw, with the winner receiving a $500 gift certificate at the wine store of their choice; those who complete the survey before November 15 will go into an additional draw for a $200 gift certificate.  The questionnaire is at

I’m guessing the combination of academic curiosity and prize winnings will get a few people moving (though David didn’t confirm if we’re talking U.S or Canadian dollars here…), so here’s hoping that you can help David and his friends.  David will be reporting on the findings on his blog so we can check out the results (more details – in David’s words – after the jump).

Personally, I’d be fascinated to see differentiators for wine blog success undergo the scientific treatment – how about you?…

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